There was clearly tension to begin the match between Serena Williams and Sloane Stephens, as there have been words exchanged off the court and an unexpected upset, when Stephens knocked Serena out of the Austrailian Open earlier in the year. Neither player wanted to walk onto the court first, like boxers fighting over who enters the ring second. Naturally, it was the champ, Serena, who out-stalled her younger opponent, and though the match began on fairly even terms, it was the champ who put the match away, 6-4, 6-1.
After the match, Serena asked the crowd how excited they were for the future of women's tennis, to wild applause, perhaps putting the rivarly on ice. Though as Stephens continues to grow and her goals become bigger, these two seem destined for a passing of the torch moment.
“If I don’t make that, shame on me,” Stephens says. She says the ‘heir apparent” talk isn’t getting to her. “Right now, I’m carrying the little torch,” says Stephens. “But I’m ok with it. I embrace it, for now.”
The Houston Astros will wear football jerseys this weekend in Oakland, because at this point the only way they can get people to watch the Astros is if they think they're watching football for a few seconds.
“I think you’ll see guys wearing the jersey of their favorite team, or favorite player,” manager Bo Porter said. ”A lot of guys may wear jerseys of guys that played at their college that are now playing in the NFL. Maybe a combination of different things.”
Porter, by the way, says he'll be rocking an Andre Johnson jersey.
Champ Bailey returned to Broncos practice after shedding a protective boot, but his status for Denver's opening week is still uncertain.
CJ Spiller returned to Bills practice after taking a leave of absence.
Lil' Wayne dropped Dedication 5 over the weekend.
Jay Electronica says he was going to use "Control" for his album until Kendrick hopped on and Big Sean kept it.
Here's the Black Hippy set from Made In America festival.
And here's A$AP Rocky.
DID YOU REALIZE?
Politicians and the police are trying to get rid of speed traps and raise speed limits, citing unsafe conditions and causing more work for police officers who would be better served elsewhere.
The NSA was accused of spying on Mexico and Brazil.
Journalist Glenn Greenwald, who lives in Rio de Janeiro, told Globo's news program "Fantastico" that a document dated June 2012 shows that Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto's emails were being read. The document's date is a month before Pena Nieto was elected.
The document on which Greenwald based the report includes communications from Pena Nieto indicating who he would like to name to some government posts among other information. It's not clear if the spying continues.
As for Brazil's leader, the June 2012 document "doesn't include any of Dilma's specific intercepted messages, the way it does for Nieto," Greenwald told The Associated Press in an email. "But it is clear in several ways that her communications were intercepted, including the use of DNI Presenter, which is a program used by NSA to open and read emails and online chats."
Salon breaks down the real reasons Labor Day was created and subsequently hijacked.
Legislation creating Labor Day did not pass the Congress in response to Americans’ demand for yet one more reason to sleep in, fire up the grill, drink beer and watch football. It passed the Congress as an outraged response to the U.S. government helping a rapacious corporation violently crush striking unionists who dared to fight for their economic rights.
Labor Day was not designed to give you a day off to commemorate the end of your summer nor to give parents a special day to hit the chain stores for back-to-school sales. It was designed to give us all a chance to honor and commemorate the American labor movement and all of its achievements for millions of workers — union and non-union alike. These achievements include (among other things) higher wages, healthcare benefits, child labor laws, the eight-hour workday and the weekend.
Labor Day was not created to give you one last day to work on your tan or to get drunk in the park at an annual picnic. Labor Day was created to give you a day to attend or participate in some sort of public event showing your solidarity with the American labor movement. As AFL leader Samuel Gompers said in the years after the holiday was created, it is a day when workers’ “rights and their wrongs would be discussed … (when they) may not only lay down their tools of labor for a holiday, but upon which they may touch shoulders in marching phalanx and feel the stronger for it.”
Labor Day was not designed to be cast as an apolitical holiday that everyone should pretend they honor because they simply support the apolitical notion of work. The “labor” in Labor Day refers not to generic “work” but to organized labor — as in unions. That makes it a deeply political occasion celebrating the ideas of worker solidarity against corporate power and organizing for collective economic rights. It is a day, in other words, to honor what even President Ronald Reagan recognized: namely, that “the right to belong to a free trade union” is “one of the most elemental human rights” and that “where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost.”
Labor Day is not designed to be a day for anti-union politicians and corporations to say “Happy Labor Day” and momentarily pretend they support the rights of American workers. It is a day for Americans to speak out against union-busting activity and vitriolic anti-union rhetoric, whether that abhorrent activity and ugly rhetoric pops up in big box stores, in state legislatures in plutocrats’ campaign ads or in schoolhouses. It is also a day for us to consider new and simple ways to better protect the rights of workers to form unions.
GOTTA HAVE IT
Hodgy Beats and Left Brain release a new video called "Karateman."